The Functions of Landscape in Jorge Isaacs and Soledad Acosta de Samper

Document Type



Modern Languages (CMC)

Publication Date

Spring 2014


Jorge Isaacs's María (1867) and Soledad Acosta de Samper's “Un crimen” (1869) encode landscape in ways that establish or undermine, respectively, hierarchies of class. Isaacs and Acosta de Samper represent landscapes as conveyors of meaning about relationships of dominance and subjugation, and they show how landscapes impose restrictions on their inhabitants in their narratives. Using concepts from cultural geography, this article argues that while Isaacs's text seeks to reproduce existing social conditions of inequality via a nostalgic reproduction of the landscape, Acosta de Samper's story calls into question the complicity of landscape with power and undermines the idyllic, pastoral narrative that María seeks to advance.